CITY NEWS

We heard more airline news. Alaska Airlines announces a new daily service between Phoenix and Everett, Washington launching later in fall 2018.

Music lovers, mark your calendars. The annual McDowell Mountain Music Festival (M3F) returns with headliners Nick Murphy, Big Gigantic, Griz, Father John Misty, The Revivalists, Cut Copy, Gorgon City, O.A.R, Mura Masa, Dr. Dog, Jai Wolf, Washed Out and more. The festival takes place at Margaret T. Hance Park in downtown Phoenix March 2-4, 2018.

 

RESORT NEWS

Nestled at the base of America’s largest urban park and wilderness preserve, the newly transformed Arizona Grand Resort & Spa now features a residential-style look in all 744 guest suites, offering a true “home away from home” experience. Highlights include new hardwood-style flooring in all guest suite living rooms, a fresh color palette and new paint throughout, new carpet in all guest suite bedrooms and new “soft goods” from bedding to drapery and sheers.  New sofa beds in the guest suite living rooms, walk-in showers featuring glass partitions and new artwork round out the list of upgrades.

Great Wolf Lodge Arizona is making history with the state’s first-ever indoor water park. The 85,000 square-foot water park will include slides, raft rides, activity pools and splash pads. In addition to the indoor pools, the hotel will feature a 27,000 square-foot family adventure center, an outdoor pool, family-friendly activities, and a food court. The hotel is set to open mid-to-late 2019.

It’s almost that time of year again. Get ready for Spring Training at Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel with the Spring Training, Sip & Stay in Downtown Phoenix Package. The offer includes a guest room, two cocktails per night and late checkout with rates beginning at $309 with the cluster code SPO.

Wind down from the excitement of Spring Training games at the Sheraton Grand Phoenix. With dates from Feb. 23 to April 1, book using the code LCPKG1 to receive the Spring Training 2018 package at the property. The special includes a daily rate of $139+ for deluxe accommodations, complimentary wifi and free kids meals with the purchase of an adult meal

The acclaimed Storytelling & Song program, now in its eleventh year, returns for the winter season at the Sheraton Grand at Wild Horse Pass. Storytelling & Song aims to protect and share the ancient cultures, traditions and meaningful history of the Pima and Maricopa People.  Enrolled members tell a combination of Pima and Maricopa legends based on desert wildlife, typically with a moral lesson, as well as personal stories about their experiences growing up on the surrounding Tribal lands. Traditional and social songs are also shared during the one-hour presentation that will take place from 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings. It is held at the resort’s outdoor fire pit and is complimentary to all resort and resort restaurant guests. The program opened with a ceremonial blessing on Dec. 7 and will continue until the closing blessing on Feb.  17.

The Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa, featuring a newly redesigned ultra-lux Spa Casitas and Spa Suites, was ranked among the Top 25 Luxury Hotels in the United States in TripAdvisor’s 2018 Travelers’ Choice Awards. The awards are determined based on “millions of reviews and opinions collected in a single year,” per TripAdvisor, zeroing in on accommodations that receive the highest marks for value, service, amenities and overall experience.

Hotel Adeline, formerly Scottsdale Inn, will begin its soft opening after partially completing its $12 million renovations. During the soft opening, the hotel will have 40 percent of rooms available for guests and is offering special rates during this time. After completion, Hotel Adeline will offer 213 guestrooms and feature a 3,000 square-foot zero edge pool.

 The Scott Resort & Spa has been reborn with lively cultural programming that celebrates Mission style architecture, infused with the colors and comforts of a 1930s Havana aesthetic and the elegant geometry of the Bauhaus movement fixtures and décor. Phase one of the renovations to the resort’s public spaces debuted in September 2017, introducing a refreshed and re-concepted lobby bar, restaurant, pool bar and outdoor pool oasis with new cabanas collectively named “The Canal Club,” as well as 14,500 square feet of refurbished meeting space. The second phase will comprise all guest rooms and suites, with significant upgrades ranging from new furniture packages and case goods to redesigned bathrooms. The following wave of renovations, to be completed fall 2018, will also unveil an all-new presidential suite and the addition of 12 one-bedroom suites.

Enjoy a night full of music and fun at the Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa. Both local and touring musicians will play at the Hyatt Center Stage Bar every evening in February. Check out Hyatt Untapped, Live & Local on Feb. 19 featuring  Marty & Natalie Lucas, a husband and wife acoustic duo that has a very wide range of influences;  Shawn Johnson, a high energy, acoustic rock singer/songwriter based out of Tempe, AZ;  Tina Bailey, a soulful acoustic rock musician and Ivan Harshman, who performs acoustic originals and covers. On Valentine’s Day, the Hyatt’s Alto Ristorante Bar will offer two different meal specials for you and your significant other. Guests can choose a four-course ($95 per person) or three-course ($40 per person) meal from Feb. 14 to Feb. 18. The hotel is also offering a Valentine getaway “Do Not Disturb” package from Feb. 9 to Feb. 21. Rates start at $419 and include a $50 resort credit (not including tax or resort fee). When making a reservation, ask for offer code DND18.

In keeping with its long-standing commitment to offer unique artistic experiences to its guests and community, The Hermosa Inn is proud to announce an exciting partnership with the Scottsdale Artists’ School. For $75 on Feb. 17 from 9:30—11:30 a.m. participants will transform LON’s Hideaway Patio using pastels on pavement while creating their own one-of-a-kind vibrant and dramatic painting. Darlene Curtis will demonstrate how this Renaissance art is brought to life. Every artist will also complete their own 2’ X 2’ masterpiece on wood as a keepsake. If you’re looking for a romantic evening, the Hermosa Inn is also rated as one of the Top 10 Romantic Boutique Hotels by USA Today. The hotel is offering a Lovers’ Grill Cooking Class, a delectable three-course Valentine’s prix fixe menu and its Kiss & Tell Romantic Getaway for couples looking to celebrate their love in authentic Arizona style.

Learn to create your own masterpieces, no matter your skill level at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa. The resort’s curated Artist in Residence program lets guests rub elbows, paint brushes and other artist’s tools with some of Arizona’s most talented artists in a host of different mediums.  The program opens with a sunset reception with each artist on Sanctuary’s Paradise Views Patio. It continues with an Artist Workshop in another private venue called Praying Monk after the signature rock formation on Camelback Mountain. The workshop, priced at $125 per person, is designed for all levels of artistic accomplishment, from beginner to advanced.  Guests will get professional instruction, insights on technique and the creative process, and materials to create a finished work of art. Following each workshop, participants are invited to join the artist for lunch in elements restaurant. Featured artists include Rembrandt Quiballo, professional photographer who will teach participants to take impressive photos on their smart phone; and Rosa Kilgore, who will lead an exciting workshop using sterling silver, semi-precious charms and amulets to create wearable art. Event dates will be announced in the New Year.

Kick off the New Year with a new approach to fitness and wellness at Boulders Resort. 12 Weeks to Wellness is a new fitness program that will be offered throughout 2018 and includes two fitness assessments with the spa’s certified fitness instructor; weekly sessions with the spa’s certified personal trainer; customized healthy eating programs by the spa’s certified nutritionist. The program also includes all fitness classes and 15 percent off meals at the Spa Café. 12 Weeks to Wellness is available for both resort guests and local residents.

 

ARTS, CULTURE & ENTERTAINMENT

The Nash, one of the top jazz venues in the world, will unveil a new exhibit of work from three local artists: mixed-media collage artist Aileen Frick and painters Abe Zucca and José Andrés Girón.  The exhibit, "Home:  Celebrating Community reflects the artists' impressions of community through iconic paintings of our downtown Phoenix neighborhoods, displayed until March 31, 2018.  The work on display will include mixed-media images of neighborhoods, paintings of iconic Phoenix scenes, and a selection of paintings featuring jazz centenarians.  In addition, the jazz club is celebrating Valentine’s Day and Black History month. Highlights a Valentine's Day concert of Love Songs with Dimitri Matheny and Holly Pyle, (complete with champagne and chocolate) on Feb.  14 and local legend Charles Lewis performing the music of Monk, Fitzgerald and Strayhorn for The Nash Third Thursday Happy Hour on Feb.  15. Lauren Kinhan, member of the acclaimed New York Voices arrives to perform a tribute to Nancy Wilson on Feb.  17.  The month concludes with Rosalyn McClure arriving directly New York City to join Lewis Nash in a Tribute to Nina Simone on Feb. 25 at 3 p.m.

Sample, sip and savor your way through the splendor of Desert Botanical Garden at Corks & Cactus, where boutique wines and desert beauty blend into a delightful event Feb. 10-11. Sample from 40 different wines each day, enjoy talented musical entertainment and purchase delicious fare. Visit with representatives from a variety of wineries, and purchase by the bottle or case at the Garden’s Wine Retail Store. Guests are able to mix & match 12 or more bottles and receive 10 percent off the total purchase price. All wine purchased will benefit the Garden’s education, research, exhibition and conservation programs. On Saturday, patrons can enjoy the dynamic duo of 76th Street engage audiences with their stories of strength, independence and love through song and storytelling. On Sunday, Lee Perreira takes the stage as he combines classic blues riffs with a soulfully textured vocal style leaving his audience instantly captured. In addition, Fabulous Food Fine Catering and Events and Gertrude’s Restaurant will host cooking demonstrations at 2 and 3 p.m. respectfully each day.

Get up close with hundreds of butterflies at Desert Botanical Garden’s Spring Butterfly exhibit. Visitors can enjoy the beauty of vibrant butterflies up close Feb. 24 - May 13, while learning about their role as pollinators, characteristics of their lifecycles and the Garden’s conservation efforts to protect them. Butterflies such as painted ladies, zebra longwings and giant swallowtails among the beautiful Desert Botanical Garden grounds. Each week, hundreds of new butterflies arrive. Plus, each week 100 new pupae will be added to the emergence chamber in the caterpillar nursery.

See a selection of remarkable, acclaimed foreign films at the 22nd Annual Greater Phoenix Jewish Film Festival. Rejoice in this annual crowd-pleasing two-week annual event with 21 new films and five short films ranging from defiance and struggle to laughter and love, with stories that engage both mind and heart. In addition, The Arizona premiere of Heading Home: The Tale of Team Israel, featuring former and current Jewish Major League Baseball players who played for Israel in the World Baseball Classic, coincides with the start of Cactus League Spring Training, featuring a few familiar ballplayer faces that will grace the big screen and baseball diamonds across the Valley. Guest speakers with knowledge of specific topics applicable to the films will moderate discussions following many of the screenings. All three screening locations will hold Valentine's Day screenings of the film An Israeli Love Story on Feb. 14 with special Valentine's Day promotions. A special Jewish folk music performance by the Rural Street Klezmer Band will precede the Tempe screening of ITZHAK on Feb. 15 in Tempe. The festival will take place Feb. 11 - 25, 2018.

The beautiful winter weather makes for the perfect time to enjoy local eats at Grazing Arizona: Street Eats Food Truck Festival. Hosted at Salt River Fields, savor over 60 of the Valley's finest food trucks while enjoying live bands, lawn games, eating contests, local vendor marketplace, kid's zone, cooking classes, and more! Unspooling across the endless grass lawns at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick on Saturday, Feb.  10 and Sunday, Feb.  11, 2018, this family-friendly festival is open from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. daily. Tickets to the 2018 Street Eats Food Truck Festival are on sale now for $12 ($15 at the gate), or $65 for VIP access, including six beverages and four food tokens, private restrooms, plus access to VIP Lounge. All food trucks accept cash and most accept credit cards. Most importantly, all food trucks will be serving up $2 samples so you can graze the day away.

Explore the photographic revolution at the Phoenix Art Museum. The Logic of Copy: Four Decades of Photography in Print delves into the fusion of printmaking and photography that transformed the art world beginning in the 1960s.  It highlights the influence of artists as Robert Heinecken, Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg, James Turrell and Tacita Dean. The exhibit is open until April 22, 2018.

What better way to enjoy Phoenix’s fabulous winter weather than at the seventh annual Arizona Cocktail Week-End? From Feb. 17-19, 2018, shake up some fun at the festival’s new location in Downtown Phoenix. The 2018 Arizona Cocktail Week-End kicks off on Saturday, Feb.  17 with an all-new opening night party "The Cocktail Jam,” hosted at The Van Buren. The Cocktail Jam will pair trending spirit brands, amazingly crafted cocktails with live music to create a one of kind experience.  

 

SPA

As part of its Valentine’s Day special, the Spa Avania at the Hyatt will give everyone who purchases a $200 gift card a custom Scottsdale Candle and a deluxe box of truffles. The offer is available from Feb. 9- Feb. 21.

The Well & Being Spa at Fairmont Scottsdale Princess is the perfect place to pamper yourself and your special someone just in time for Valentine’s Day. February specials include a 60 or 90-minute Himalayan Salt Stone massage, the Berries & Bubbly Body Treatment featuring a sugar scrub and massage paired with a glass of champagne, the Merlot Massage with a winery-grape serum, Red Velvet Manicure and Pedicure, and a selection of couple’s massage options. 

Rejuvenate mind and body at Joya Spa at Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia. Correct any uneven complexion with the Lumminescence Lightening Peel, relax with a loved one during a Mi Amor Couples Massage or replenish dry skin with a Cupid’s Passion Manicure and Pedicure.

 

DINING

Good news for all craft beer enthusiasts – DeSoto Central Market’s ‘Brewery in Residence’ series kicked off with the three-month-long Huss-Desoto Pop Up Taproom. Until April, guests can experience the bold flavors and chill craft beer vibes of this family-owned brewery for the first in a series of three-month-long 'Brewery in Residence' pop-ups, highlighting a rotating collection of top local breweries. Tempting beer lovers with 12 different craft drafts, plus gourmet bar bites inspired by the menu at Huss' Uptown Taproom, enjoy Best AZ Beer winner Scottsdale Blonde and favorites such as Copper State IPA, Koffee Kolsch, Papago Orange Blossom and Coconut Joe. The Huss-Desoto Pop Up Taproom will also offer rare barrel-aged beers, new seasonal beers and an exclusive beer served only at Huss-DeSoto.

The Scott’s new signature restaurant, The Canal Club is infused with the colors and comforts of a 1930s Havana aesthetic, bringing together the culture and soul of New Orleans and the classic architectural geometry of The Bauhaus, all while celebrating the desert oasis sanctuary it calls home. The new furnishings and décor are met with an all-new menu with a fresh approach to modern American cuisine using Cuban inspired ingredients. Under direction of Chef de Cuisine Chris Castro, The Canal Club serves three meals a day in the main dining room, in addition to a selection of tapas and libations at the lobby bar. The Canal Club’s beverage program is crafted to provide a fresh departure from the local area cocktail scene; a careful infusion of modern technique and classic fundamentals.

Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour recently added another top local bartender to its award-winning bar team. Keifer Gilbert, formerly of Bar Crudo, Counter Intuitive and UnderTow, will begin serving up drinks from Bitter & Twisted’s famously intricate 32-page Book o’ Cocktails.

If you’re craving Mexican food this month, Macayo’s Mexican Restaurants has several food and drink specials. This year, the restaurant is focusing on a company-wide “culinary commitment” to fresh, quality ingredients in their signature family recipes. All year long, Macayo’s will serve up the specialty Perfect Patron Margarita in a silver shaker for $10.79. For dinner, guests can customize their chimichangas during the “Gimme a Chimi” special for $8.99 until Feb.  12.

Mowry & Cotton, the newest restaurant in the Phoenician, quickly became a favorite among locals and visitors alike. The eatery is now embracing its newfound notoriety with the launch of its “Meet at Mowry” signature series. Meet at Mowry kicks off Thursday, Feb. 22, at the laid back restaurant and bar tucked inside the AAA Five Diamond resort. Up first is a Wine + Dinner Feast featuring Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery, with continuous courses and four distinct wine varieties from the Sonoma County -based winemaker. Monthly Meet at Mowry celebrations will range from communal wine parties to large, seasonal events, with plans including another Wine + Dinner Feast in March, a BBQ, Bourbon and Beer Feast in April, a Kentucky Derby Party in May, and more. All events share a community emphasis, giving attendees a chance to sip and sample their way through the menu alongside locals, resort guests, chefs and industry VIPs alike.

It may only be February, but for Phoenicians, that means it’s the perfect time to grab a beer and relax outside.  Helio Basin Brewery, started by friends Dustin Hazer and Mike Conley, opened last year in Arcadia, serving the craft brews to anyone looking for a good beer and place to relax with friends. Focused on quality, the brewery quickly became a local hotspot, serving up a number of delicious varieties of the drink. 

 

SPORTS/GOLF

The 2018 Cactus League schedule has been announced Cactus League Spring Training, a seasonal rite in Greater Phoenix, roars to life every spring with the iconic sounds of cracking bats, snapping mitts and happy fans. For baseball lovers, it doesn’t get much better than this: sunny weather, affordable tickets and unparalleled proximity to the best players in the game. The 2018 Cactus League season features 15 major league teams and more than 200 games from February 23 to March 27, 2018.